The bat used by Jackie Robinson during the 1949 MLB All-Star Game in Brooklyn sold for $1.08 million (including the buyer’s premium) at auction on Saturday, the Goldin Collectibles Market announced.
While not the most expensive baseball bat ever sold at auction, that record belongs to the bat with which Babe Ruth hit his first home run at Yankee Stadium in 1923, worth $1.265 million, it is extremely rare to cross the $1 million threshold.
The bat was purchased by Hunt Auctions, which most recently made waves by holding auctions of Bill Russell memorabilia on behalf of a private buyer.
The bat includes a letter of authenticity from Robinson’s wife, Rachel, who wrote, “The bat has been in the Robinson family archives since the day Jackie first used it.”
“The direct provenance of Rachel Robinson and the added historical significance of the 1949 All-Star Game being played in Brooklyn place this example at the pinnacle of Jackie’s bats,” David Hunt, president of Hunt Auctions, said in a statement.
Robinson won his only MVP award during the 1949 season. The 75th anniversary of Robinson’s major league debut to break the color barrier was celebrated on April 15.
The same Goldin auction also included a Robinson home jersey worn at a 1951 game. Including the buyer’s premium, the bid had fetched nearly $8.5 million, which would have been by far the most expensive piece of sports memorabilia ever sold. face ever sold at auction. However, the reservation was not fulfilled and the shirt was not sold.
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Jackie Robinson bat sold for $1.08 million